I’m putting this blog up again because it has become even more relevant then it was when I first put it together and that is because of one man’s superlative effort. Let me introduce you to him, if you haven’t heard of him, although I might say 10 million of us already have because we are now following his Twitter site. His name is Peter Stefanovic and he is a journalist, lawyer and film maker. This comes from his ‘about.me’ site.
“Stefanovic is a high profile Lawyer, no bullshit Journalist, blogger, Filmmaker, campaigner, Labour supporter and Political and Social Commentator widely known for his no nonsense films debunking Political deceit which have been watched over 250 Million times. Nominated for Legal Personality of the Year in 2016 he is a champion for social Justice and the NHS.“
A short time ago, he put up a video showing the Prime Mendacitor in full flow, telling one lie after another and suggested to his followers that if they were as opposed to this behaviour as he was, they should re-tweet the video. As of yesterday it had been re-tweeted 10 million times. But Peter Stefanovic wants to push it even further and quite right too.
“Until UK media steps up & reports his shameful behavior,” He said in a Tweet yesterday. “Until every MP stands up & calls out this disgraceful national scandal, every single lie & falsehood spoken by Boris Johnson since he became PM remains completely unchallenged on the Parliamentary record. I wont accept that.”
I think he could turn out to be the man for our times. So here is my pennyworth in support, I put it up originally on March the 11th, but I make no excuse for putting it up again now, these things need saying over and over again.
I don’t think there can be very many people alive at the moment who do not know that the ex-President of the United States and the current Prime Minister of the UK are compulsive liars. Many of us would say they are so removed from the truth that we shouldn’t believe a word they say. In fact their behaviour has been so brazen and open that it has almost become the norm. And sadly there is nothing new about a lying politician, as the poets tell us. And don’t worry, I’m not going to give them the oxygen of publicity in this blog by publishing their ugly, lying faces. Lets look at poets and good men instead.
Here is Rudyard Kipling writing in his poem Epitaphs of the War 1914-18.
“A DEAD STATESMAN
I could not dig: I dared not rob:
Therefore I lied to please the mob.
Now all my lies are proved untrue
And I must face the men I slew.
What tale shall serve me here among
Mine angry and defrauded young?”
And in our own time here is a Russian poet called Yevgeny Yevtushenko, writing on the same topic and with the same passion.
TELLING LIES TO THE YOUNG IS WRONG
“Telling lies to the young is wrong.
Proving to them that lies are true is wrong.
Telling them that God’s in his heaven
and all’s well with the world is wrong.
The young know what you mean. The young are people.
Tell them the difficulties can’t be counted
and let them see not only what will be
but see with clarity these present times
Say obstacles exist they must encounter,
sorrow happens, hardship happens.
The hell with it. Who never knew
the price of happiness will not be happy.
Forgive no error you recognize,
it will repeat itself, increase,
and afterwards our pupils
will not forgive in us what we forgave.”
As our splendid Shelley said in the Defence of Poetry in 1821 “Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world.”
All of them are stating a truth that we are having to face on a daily basis and the big question they all beg is how on earth do those of us who value truth and honesty combat compulsive liars in power. Hitler and Goebbels called their lies ‘propaganda’ and felt completely justified in using it and it took a world war with massive loss of life to get rid of them and now here we are again being led by liars. Surely, surely there must be a quicker way than a world war to remove them. We just haven’t found it yet.
We need to put our heads together (if such a thing is now allowed) and design a powerful spotlight that we can play on our dishonest leaders every time they spout lies at us. And we also need to remember that there have been plenty of honest, truth telling politicians like the ones I’ve pictured below, who care for the people they’ve been elected to govern and don’t lie to us. Some have paid a terrible penalty for their honesty, but these are the leaders we need and the sort of men and women whose example we should be following.
And of course, it would help if we only had a press that understood that it is their job to tell the truth to power. We’ve got a very long way to go, but it is a way we must tread if we care about democracy and freedom.
Allons enfants de la Patrie.